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Murray, Nadal and Federer in action on day one of Australian Open

| 19.01.2015

British number one and Australian Open third-favourite Andy Murray (7/1) has been given a tough-looking draw for the first Grand Slam of 2015, with the likes of Rafael Nadal (8/1) and Roger Federer (5/1) in the same half.

The trio of modern greats are also in action on the opening day, with the Scot (seeded sixth) to face little-known Indian qualifier Yuki Bhambri (304 in the world rankings), who is to play in his first main draw at a singles Grand Slam event.

Murray, who is one of three Brits (along with James Ward and Kyle Edmund) to feature in the first round of the Australian Open (the most since 2002) is heavily odds-on at 1/100 to win his opening match. He is a far more enticing 8/1 chance to claim a 6-0 scoreline in the first set.

The two-time Grand Slam champion Scotsman could potentially meet Grigor Dimitrov in the fourth round, followed by Federer in the quarters and Nadal in the semis. Novak Djokovic (10/11 odds-on tournament favourite) would be the most likely final opponent.

Spaniard Nadal, who arguably could’ve won the most amount of Grand Slams (he is currently on 14, three behind Federer) by now if it were not for his injury issues, returns after another long spell out.

The 2009 champion faces a tough test first up, though, against Mikhail Youzhny, who has reached the quarters here before. But Nadal is still heavily fancied with Coral to get through, odds-on at 1/10, and he is 11/4 to beat the Russian 3-1.

Second seed and four-time champion here Federer, meanwhile, will face Taiwanese veteran Lu Yen-hsun. This duo have played before at the first round in Wimbledon in 2009, with the Swiss winning 3-0. Federer is odds-on at 1/50 to beat him again and 2/9 to do so in three sets.

Lu has the potential to cause a shock, though, having claimed the scalps of the likes of Murray and Andy Roddick before, so he is a 12/1 chance to gain an unlikely victory.

There is a tasty match up on the first day in rising star Dimitrov (1/10 to win) against Dustin Brown (11/2). While other stars such as home hopes Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios, and Tomas Berdych, Richard Gasquet and Ernests Gulbis are also in action.

In the women’s section, Romanian Simona Halep (7/1 tournament third-favourite) is up first on the Rod Laver Arena against Karin Knapp. She is odds-on at 1/12 to win that encounter.

Maria Sharapova (4/1 tournament chance), Ana Ivanovic (20/1) and Eugenie Bouchard (14/1) also feature on the first day on the three main courts.

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Sam Barnard

Sam has been writing for Coral since January 2014, and is the assistant editor of the news site. As well as the main betting sports, football, tennis and cricket, he covers the likes of golf, F1 and darts too, the latter of which has become a particular favourite. Sam enjoys playing as much as writing about sports, but niggling injuries have limited his participation in recent years, so is happy to mainly watch the pros such as Manchester United, Yorkshire CCC, Raymond van Barneveld and even Gibraltar national football team instead.